Montview Elementary School,
ResultsMontview utilizes multiple assessments to track student achievement. Classroom teachers maintain student monitoring notebooks in literacy and mathematics, which include observations and examinations of student work. Data on standardized tests show increased achievement. Iowa Test of Basic Skills, average scores in reading, language, and math have increased, and data on the Riverside Integrated Language Arts Performance Assessment showed an elimination of gaps in performance between white and non-white students.
Standardized testing includes the norm-referenced Iowa Test of Basic Skills, administered to all students in the district at the end of grade 4. Between 1995 and 1997, average student scores at Montview increased in reading, language, and math by 0.7, 0.6, and 0.7 respectively. Disaggregated data show African-American student increases of 0.8, 0.9, and 0.7 in the same series of tests; for Hispanic students, the comparable increases were 0.9, 0.3, and 0.8.
Similarly, data on the Riverside Integrated Language Arts Performance Assessment, which is also administered to fourth grade students in the district, show increases for all students between 1995 and 1997 and a virtual elimination of gaps in performance between Caucasian students and both Hispanic and African-American students.
Montview administrators perform as "head learners" modeling the attitudes, understandings, and behaviors they expect of their staff and students. Montview's principal has been awarded the Outstanding Literacy Administrator Award for 1996 and the Wright Way Award from the Colorado Principal's Center in 1997 for her restructuring efforts by the Colorado Council of the International Reading Association.
A study completed by RMC Research of Denver concluded that coaching was associated with the greatest change in classroom practice, and was viewed as very positive and critically important by the individuals coached. In this same study, dialogue groups were viewed as most effective because they helped participants solve immediate problems.
The four-day Literacy Learning Institute was viewed as very effective in motivating participants to change, introducing them to the Literacy Learning philosophy and the five major constructs: the conditions of learning, the teaching/learning cycle, the reading process, the writing process, and the math process.
In addition to the above study, the assistant principal at Montview conducted a survey to measure the culture within the building and to compare those results with the RMC study and the student achievement data available. The study was based on the research of Jon Saphier and Matthew King. Saphier and King identified 12 norms of school culture which relate to student achievement. Of the 12, the three which have the highest correlation to student achievement are collegiality, experimentation and reaching out to the knowledge base. Using a modified version of Saphier's and King's four point rating scale for each cultural norm the Montview staff rated those three norms as follows: collegiality, 3.7; experimentation, 3.6, and reaching out to the knowledge base, 3.8. The remaining eight norms were rated as follows:
During the spring, all fourth graders throughout Aurora Public Schools take two different standardized tests. One is the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills Battery, and the other is the Riverside Language Arts Performance Assessment. The results of the years 1995-1997 illustrate that Montview's students exceed scores of students from higher socio-economic, more stable schools. The 1996 and 1997 scores on the Riverside were the highest in the district.
Site Visit Documentation
Montview Elementary School's success was recorded based on a site visit conducted by the National Awards Program for Model Professional Development in 1997: